Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Cleaning Up: If You Want to Donate

As we look up North, we find devastation. But we also find hope: people cleaning up, working together, rebuilding.

It's tempting to send goods to help, but the most efficient way to help is to contribute money.

If you don't want to donate to the well-known Red Cross or Salvation Army, check out your charity on  Charity Navigator or Charity Review. Both these sites will allow you to vet your charities before sending them money, so that you know the most money of your dollar ends up helping people, and that you're not donating to a scam. Read up on the tips to smart giving.

One 4-star group I found through the sites above, for example, was All Hands Volunteer.

Also consider donating blood. A check at the Red Cross site shows that Type A and Type O blood is currently needed most, although all types are welcome. If you'd rather not donate through the Red Cross but still want to donate, you can check to see if any of your local hospitals are collecting blood. In Raleigh, for example, Rex Hospital has a donor center on Blue Ridge Road, open on Mondays and Wednesdays from 10:30 am to 6:30 pm and Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays 8:30-4:30.

While pictures from New York--with half the lights off, and water filling the streets--are creepy and reminiscent of a zombie apocalypse movie or two, it's not the end of time. It's just time to rebuild.

Prayers/wishes for quick recovery to everyone in the New England area who has been affected by the storm!

And also--Happy Halloween!

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